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5 Inspirational Lottery Winners

5 Inspirational Lottery Winners

Check out our list of 5 lottery winners and their stories that will inspire you to buy a ticket.
5 Inspirational Lottery Winners

We’ve all heard it before. Your odds of winning the lottery and jackpot are so unimaginably low that people have drawn some wild comparisons. You have better odds of getting struck by lightning twice, becoming president of the United States, encountering a poisonous plant or animal during your daily routine, and even having random airplane parts fall on you than you do of winning the lottery. So why does anyone play the lottery? 

People play the lottery because everyone needs a little hope, it gives people something to dream about. The lottery jackpots can change not only your life but your children’s lives and future generations beyond that. Almost every state has had a lotto win by someone who needed the money and used their prizes to change their lives for the better. 

We put together a list of some of the most inspirational lotto winners whether it was Powerball, Megamillions, Pick 6, etc. You can’t help but think after reading some of the stories, why not me? Without further ado here they are:

5 Inspirational Lottery Winners

  • A single mother of five wins a life-altering Powerball jackpot

Cynthia Stafford took up her brother's five children after he was killed by a drunk driver and raised them as a single mother. She also assisted her father in making ends meet as if raising 5 kids on her own wasn't enough. Money was scarce for the family in January of 2007. She was living in a thousand-square-foot house with her huge family, straining to pay the bills and fantasizing about winning the jackpot which at the time was $112 million.

Cynthia began dreaming about winning the $112 million jackpot back in 2004. She employed a variety of tactics to attract lady luck, including sleeping with the winning number written on a note beneath her pillow, constantly meditating on winning a $112 million jackpot, and picturing how she would feel if she won. She is a firm believer in the saying “positive thoughts produce positive results.”

Three years later, by an extraordinary stroke of fate, Stafford walked away with the precise jackpot she had hoped to win. Her tactics were quite simple, buy a couple of tickets per month and play the numbers that popped into her head as she played. The power of belief is strong!

  • Powerball Winners Use Jackpot Winnings to Fight Disease that Killed Their Granddaughter

Paul and Sue Rosenau knew exactly what they planned to do with the $181.2 million they won in a Powerball game in 2008. Their winning ticket was purchased five years to the day after their granddaughter, Makayla, died of a rare and incurable illness known as Krabbe Disease.

Krabbe Disease affects only one out of every 100,000 babies, so it does not receive the same level of funding as other diseases nor the media attention. It's a terrible, degenerative disease that affects the nerve lining and usually kills you within the first two years.

The Legacy of Angels Foundation was formed by Paul and Sue Rosenau to raise awareness about the disease and to assist support promising research into treatments and cures. Sue and Paul Rosenau serve on the board of directors of the charity, seeking to spare other families the agony they have experienced.

  • A Schoolteacher Uses Lottery Winnings to Build Kids Summer Camp

Les Robins was a high school teacher who believed it was a pity that today's children don't grow up doing the things he did as a child: going to camp, swimming, playing sports, and enjoying the outdoors. When Robins won a $111 million Powerball prize, he decided to use the money to start his camp to provide joy to children.

Robins built Camp Winnegator on 226 acres he purchased with his lottery winnings, and it lasted more than a decade. It offered youngsters a low-cost summer destination where they could horseback ride, craft, swim, and play on the lake. Most importantly, the kids were able to disengage from video games and mobile phones and reconnect with nature and their real-life friends.

  • Smith Family Uses Winnings to Give Back to City

Pearlie Mae Smith instilled in her seven children the value of giving back to their community, and they grew up helping in soup kitchens and working in community gardens. They grew up in Trenton, NJ, and Pearlie’s daughter had already been working as a mentor for women who were at risk and in need of help.

When the family won a $429 million Powerball jackpot, it was apparent that they intended to utilize the money to help those in their community who were less fortunate. Some decided to quit their jobs and enjoy their winnings, but Pearlie’s daughter used her winnings to help fund the charity she worked for to make more of an impact. The Smith Family Foundation was established by the Smith family to offer financial backing to grassroots groups striving to better the lives of individuals in Trenton, New Jersey. Education, community development, Christian education, and assisting kids and families in the Trenton region are among the foundation's top goals.

  • Man Donates Entire Jackpot to Help Fight Cancer

The majority of lottery winners make plans to quit their jobs, tour the world, or purchase a couple of homes, luxurious cars, anything their mind can think of. Tom Crist, on the other hand, had a completely different plan when he won $40 million in a Canadian lottery. He gave every penny he had to the fight against the illness that took his wife's life. 

Tom had lost his 44-year-old wife, Jan, to cancer two years before. He was retired, had a sizable savings account, and his adult children were prospering. As a result, he chose not to keep any of it for himself. He sent the full lump sum to a cancer organization in Calgary. His children were enthusiastic about the concept.

Ethan Garsman
By Ethan Garsman